As the world tried to get back to normal in 2021, the weird news kept coming. The biggest supernatural comedy movie of all time made its return to the big screen with a new instalment, some of our favourite ghost hunting shows dropped new episodes, and there was plenty of spooky news stories, strange happenings, ghostly sightings, and great paranormal entertainment for us to sink our teeth in to.
January

Harvard Astronomer Claimed Passing Comet Was Alien Tech Visiting Earth

'Oumuamua Was Alien Technology Visiting Earth

In January the paranormal world became obsessed with a 60-year-old cold case thanks to BBC Radio 4's supernatural podcast series, 'The Battersea Poltergeist'. Host, Danny Robins turned us all into armchair supernatural sleuths as week-by-week he presented more evidence on the historic Hitchings family case and encouraged listeners to formulate and share their theories.

But the big news in January was the claim by a Harvard astronomer that a 2017 comet which passed-by Earth was in fact alien technology visiting us.

The unusually-shaped 'Oumuamua comet is the first interstellar object we've observed passing through the Solar System. This has lead professor Avi Loeb to conclude that the object wasn't a comet at all, but was in fact sent by a distant alien civilisation.

The roughly half-mile-long object was unusually flat, moving at an irregular pace, and according to observations made by the Spitzer Space Telescope was at least ten times more shiny than a typical comet. Astronomers had never seen a natural object with such extreme proportions in the solar system before.
February

The Mystery Of Ghostly Bomber Over Chatsworth

Lancaster Bomber Over Chatsworth House

In February, 'Unexplained: Caught On Camera' returned to the Really channel. The spooky clips show brought us new unbelievable, bizarre and sometimes impossible clips, most of which are from the UK and the USA, including everything from alleged ghost sightings to UFOs. All of this unexplainable phenomena is watched over by the show's paranormal experts. We saw everything from a mermaid that washed up on a Norfolk beach and a ghost hunt at a haunted shack in Cornwall with links to the infamous occultist, Aleister Crowley.

We also heard about a 'Ghost Adventures' fan from New Zealand who was conned out of her lifesavings after she was contacted by a scammer impersonating Zak Bagans.

But the big topic of discussion was the mystery of a ghostly plane spotted over the Chatsworth estate in Derbyshire by a local couple. Christine and Robin Gardner told Derbyshire Live that they saw what they believed to be a Avro Lancaster bomber in the skies above the stately home and its grounds which suddenly vanished in to thin air.

The mystery was later solved by readers of the news website who uncovered that the RAF routinely fly Lockheed C-130 Hercules transport planes near Chatsworth. As a four-engine plane they could easily be mistaken for a bomber. It was later confirmed that a Hercules did fly nearby at the time the couple reported the phantom aircraft.
March

Drakelow Tunnels Ends Ghost Hunting Events After Plans For New Wine Store Are Approved

Old workshop machines at Drakelow Tunnels.

In March, Jack Osbourne and Katrina Weidman returned with new episodes of the US ghost hunting show 'Portals To Hell', we were introduced to a ghost busting vicar on ITV's 'This Morning', and comedian David Mitchell caused a stir in the paranormal world when he explained why he thought ghosts can't exist.

The big news in March was the sad loss of Drakelow Tunnels as a ghost hunting venue. The formerly top secret wartime tunnels near Kidderminster once housed an underground aircraft factory and later in life a nuclear bunker, but for the last few years it's become a popular paranormal hotspot where countless public ghost hunting events are hosted each year.

The news came in March that all events at the abandoned labyrinthine network of tunnels will be halted. The owners originally said that this was due to the "crippling knock-on effects" of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. However, it later emerged that the changes to access were down to a recently approved planning application to convert the tunnels into a huge bonded wine store, with an attached museum to preserve some of the site's important history.

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April

TikToker Creeps Out Followers With Spooky Tour Of Real-Life Conjuring House

TikTok Tour Of 'The Conjuring' House

April was the month that the world got its first glimpse of the adorable but mischievous Mini Stay Pufts from the new 'Ghostbusters: Afterlife' movie, Bill Murray later reacted to the pint-sized marshmallow men in a video.

Brits were treated to the Kiwi supernatural comedy series 'Wellington Paranormal' that premiered on Now TV, television ghost hunter Yvette Fielding announced the release of her new spooky children's book 'The Ghost Hunter Chronicles', and Mulder and Scully went viral after the stars of 'The X-Files' were reunited in a photo on Twitter.

Meanwhile, over on TikTok it was a current resident of the real-life hours that inspired the 2013 movie, 'The Conjuring', that went viral. Madison is the daughter of Cory and Jennifer Heinzen, who bought the infamous Harrisville farmhouse in 2019. With her unique access to the allegedly haunted property, Madison's TikTok clips have gained a lot of attention.

Madison had been filming tours and answering questions about the creepy property in Rhode Island where the real-life ghost story that inspired the first movie in James Wan's Conjuring series took place. The house has since become infamous for its history of hauntings and has even been investigated by television shows including 'Kindred Spirits' and Zak Bagans and the 'Ghost Adventures' team in a two-hour special that aired on the Travel Channel on Halloween night in 2019.
May

Haunted Bodmin Jail Reopens As A New Boutique Hotel

Bodmin Jail Hotel & Attraction, Cornwall

In May there was lots of talk about a possible link between a US government experiment and the paranormal world. This was mostly down to the Muon g-2 experiment being misunderstood due to exciting sounding mentions of a new branch of science the hints at something currently unknown to us influencing our reality. Of course, it turned out this was not what the science story was about.

The big news from the paranormal world in May was the re-opening of the historic haunted jail at Bodmin, which has been given a £40 million upgrade, making the Cornish location a world-class tourist attraction.

The biggest chunk of the work has been turning the jail's cell blocks into a new boutique hotel, which gives guests the chance to spend the night behind bars. Each of the luxury bedrooms are housed in the space that once made up three of the historic prison's former cells.

Part of the upgrade was a complete overhaul of the existing exhibits, creating a brand new, £8.5 million attraction. The experience is mostly housed in a purpose-made building which sits on the site of the prison's former medical wing and links to parts of the original prison that haven't been consumed by the hotel.

The attraction opened at the end of 2020, but with various coronavirus lockdowns in place, it wasn't really until this summer that the new Bodmin Jail could get into full swing and welcome visitors en masse.
June

The US Government Released A Highly Anticipated Report On UFOs

US Defense Report On UFOs

Alien visitors were making headlines in June when the US government released a report on its research of UFOs, which included details about the government's task force researching Unidentified Aerial Phenomena (UAPs).

The report was put together by the Office of the Director of National Intelligence with input from various US government departments including the Air Force, FBI and Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA).

It should be noted that the report does not once mention the term extraterrestrial or alien, this means it also doesn't specifically rule out non-terrestrial causes for UAPs. In fact the report concludes that "a handful of UAPs appear to demonstrate advanced technology," although admittedly the number of these incidents is small, in just 18 incidents unusual movement patterns or flight characteristics were observed.

Perhaps the biggest revelation in the report is that the Department of Defense formed an Unidentified Aerial Phenomena Task Force (UAPTF), which shows that this unexplained phenomenon is taken seriously by government officials.

The best place to read the full nine-page report is on the Black Vault, a website that currently boasts an archive of more than two million pages on nearly every government secret imaginable, all of which have been obtained through the Freedom of Information Act or other means of accessing US government public information.
July

The Third Series Of 'Help! My House Is Haunted' Landed On Discovery+

Help! My House Is Haunted: Pier House

July was a good month for trailers with teasers dropping for both 'Halloween Kills' and 'Ghostbusters: Afterlife', but it was the small screen we were speaking about the most in July as fans of 'Help! My House Is Haunted' binge watched the British ghost hunting series on Discovery+.

The show's third series dropped at the end of June and we got to see Barri Ghai, Jayne Harris and newcomer Ian Lawman tackle 12 new cases as they travelled the UK visiting houses and families troubled by hauntings, using the latest technology to try to capture never before seen proof of the paranormal.

Ian took over from US medium, Chris Fleming, who has been a regular on the show since its first episode, but was unable to appear in the new episodes due to the pandemic.

In Ian's first appearance, the team head to the historic coastal town of Galston-on-Sea in Norfolk. The case started off with a negative undertone, but guided by Ian - who is an ordained exorcist specialising in the dark arts - the team are able to turn things around. It's an emotional moment, not just for the homeowners, Claire and her fiancé Daniel, but also for the team.

The new series was such a talking point that it was discussed by celebs including Ed Sheeran, Denise van Outen and Martine McCutcheon in an episode of Channel 4's 'Celebrity Gogglebox'. Other celebrities watching the Discovery+ show included BBC Radio 1's Nick Grimshaw and his niece Liv, Shaun Ryder and his Happy Mondays mate Bez, and television host Jonathan Ross.

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August

A New Haunted Museum Opened Its Doors In Stoke-On-Trent

In August a new paranormal-themed venue opened its doors in Stoke. The Haunted Museum & Spirit Shop is housed in a 200-year-old former shop in Fenton and is spread across two floors with five atmospheric rooms of haunted artefacts and ghost hunting paraphernalia.

The museum's owner, Craig Longson, has over two decades of experience hunting things that go bump in the night. Along the way he's collected some fascinating items and antiquities, each with a creepy and genuine ghost story attached. After years of storing and researching these items at home, Craig has finally been able to make them all available for public viewing in a dedicated haunted depository.

The collection now serves as a community hub for paranormal investigators, hosting guided tours in the day and for the brave, ghost hunts and even sleepovers at night. All of which is offered at a very affordable price with profits going back into the museum. The atmospheric museum is dimly lit, with jet black walls, dark drapes, and candles flickering throughout.

The whole building is rigged with cameras in the hopes of capturing paranormal activity should it occur in any of the museum's five main rooms. These cameras have already proved useful after one of the museum's artefacts, a haunted doll named Mary, was caught moving. Later in the year, Craig appeared on ITV's 'This Morning' to introduce the doll to its hosts Phillip Schofield and Holly Willoughby.
September

Paul O'Grady Opened Up About Living In A Haunted House

Paul O'Grady

As the summer drew to a close, 'Paranormal: Captured' returned with a new six-part series on Pick, the West Country comedian Daisy May Cooper confessed that she'd love to train as an exorcist, and Hinckley's haunted museum held an open day to celebrate its expansion.

The big talking point of September was a confession made by Paul O'Grady. The British comedian and television presenter admitted that his house is haunted by the phantom aroma of a mysterious perfume.

Paul made the confession on television ghost hunter, Yvette Fielding's new podcast, 'Paranormal Activity'. Paul told Yvette, "when I first moved in here, people used to say they could smell perfume and I couldn't, I never smelt it. It was about two years later, I got up one night and went downstairs for a drink, and I smelt it on the stairs, it hit me."

A strange tale, but that's not all. As Paul tells Yvette, "now, here's the weird bit..." He continues, "I went to lunch two years ago and the girl who was sitting next to me was a friend of one of the relations of the lady who lived in this house, and she had a message for me, the girl, she said 'ask Paul does he smell the perfume'."
October

The Battersea Poltergeist Creator Returned With A New Paranormal Investigation Podcast

Danny Robins - Uncanny

As we approached Halloween, Danny Moss and his team returned for their fourth series 'The Haunted Hunts: Project Invocation', and global pop star Kesha announced that she'll be exploring the supernatural in a new Discovery+ series.

There was also lots of great Halloween entertainment including 'The Curse Of The Highgate Vampire', on Discovery+, Channel 4's 'Celebrity Ghost Trip', and Jack and Kelly Osbourne boarded a haunted ocean liner in their two-hour Halloween special, 'Jack & Kelly Osbourne: Night Of Terror'. Yvette Fielding also embarked on a live investigation for Halloween that streamed exclusively on their official YouTube channel.

The big paranormal event in October was the launch of Danny Robin's new podcast series. Hot on the heels of the multi-million download, global hit 'The Battersea Poltergeist', Radio 4 brought as 'Uncanny', a new thrilling and terrifying 15-part podcast series investigating real life cases of supernatural encounters.

Across the series, listeners heard model Charli Howard talk about being terrorised by a supernatural stalker in her Brooklyn apartment, from a policeman who says he encountered a UFO in the midst of a bizarre murder inquiry, and a young nurse details claims of paranormal forces saving a patient. The series kicked off by exploring the story of Ken, just one inhabitant of a dorm room in Belfast that spooked inhabitants over many years.

Danny's new series premiered just as he began a live stage tour of 'The Battersea Poltergeist', giving fans the chance to get involved with the conversation with the show's creator and other guest experts from the podcast. The tour headed to eight locations across the UK, including Salford, Guildford, Basingstoke, Ipswich, York, Poole and Brighton. A London date on the night of Halloween itself saw the live show visit the Clapham Grand, located just minutes from the site of the actual haunting at 63 Wycliffe Road.
November

'Ghostbusters: Afterlife' Finally Got Its Delayed Cinema Release

November was a big month for paranormal news, US ghost hunter Nick Groff announced he's having a baby with his new wife, the 'Are You Haunted..?' team returned for the third series of their back-to-basics web series, the Pentagon announced it has formed a new task force to counter the UFO threat, and ghostly goings on were captured on CCTV at Shepton Mallet prison and in a Melbourne man's backyard.

The biggest event of November was the long awaited release of 'Ghostbusters: Afterlife', which had its opening delayed by the pandemic, but it was worth the wait. The movie currently has a very respectable rating of 7.8 out of 10 from IMDb users and an incredible audience score of 95% on Rotten Tomatoes.

In the movie, Phoebe and her brother, Trevor played by 'Stranger Things' star Finn Wolfhard, go on a journey to uncover the lost legacy of their grandfather, original Ghostbuster Egon Spengler. The movie, which also stars Paul Rudd in the role of a local school teacher, is set in the rural town of Summerville. Where the new generation of Ghostbusters battle a series of paranormal events that seem to be emanating from an old mine in the small town.

Although the movie revolves around Phoebe, Trevor and their classmate known as 'Podcast', there were some blasts from the past too. Bill Murray, Ernie Hudson, Sigourney Weaver and Annie Potts cameoed as their original characters in the film.
December

The End Of A Great Year For Haunted Magazine

Haunted Magazine

The year ended with tales of a curse in the BBC's 'Strictly Come Dancing' studio,  a hotel in Somerset made headlines after ghost hunters spent the night there, and a pint being knocked over by an unseen force in Sunderland left people scratching their heads.

December also marked the end of a fantastic year for our friends at Haunted Magazine. From the beginning of the month, the long-running British paranormal publication has been available alongside such prestigious titles as the Radio Times and New Scientist on the shelves of hundreds of WHSmith stores across the UK.

This is the first time the magazine has been available on the high street, a huge achievement for an independently run magazine. The quarterly magazine offers its readers a mix of articles about paranormal investigation, interviews with the stars of ghost hunting television shows, and supernatural movie news.

This isn't the only big news for the mag in 2021. Earlier in the year it was announced that Haunted Magazine was to spread its reach to a new audience in the US, thanks to a deal that will see it on the shelves of hundreds of Barnes & Noble bookstores. The chain is one of the biggest booksellers in the US, with the largest number of retail outlets spanning all 50 states and since July 1 they've be stocking copies of the British magazine.

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